Guest nights rise in Feb, led by backpackers, holiday parks

International guest nights increase 3% to 1.06 million in a month when visitor arrivals gained from China's Lunar New Year celebrations.

New Zealand guest nights rose in February, recovering most of January's loss, led by increasing visitors at backpackers and holiday parks.

Total guest nights rose a seasonally adjusted 2.3 percent to 2.64 million in February, after a 4.1 percent decline a month earlier, according to Statistics New Zealand.

The fastest growth was at backpacker lodges, which rose 2.9 percent to 356,000 guest nights and a 2.7 percent gain in holiday parks to 516,000.

Guest nights at motels, motor inns and apartments grew 1.9 percent to 866,000 and hotel stays advanced 0.8 percent to 909,000.

International guest nights increased 3 percent to 1.06 million in a month when visitor arrivals gained from China's Lunar New Year celebrations. Domestic guest nights rose 2 percent to 1.59 million.

Guest nights in the South Island rose 3.7 percent in February to 1.04 million and were up 1.5 percent to 1.61 million in the North Island.

The national occupancy rate was unchanged at 48.1 percent, though unadjusted capacity shrank to 3.93 million guest nights from 4.36 million a month earlier.

Capacity has shrunk for the past eight months, with the sharpest decline in holiday parks.

(BusinessDesk)